At Chaos Springs we believe that best  practice farming must include managing the farm as a whole entity.

 
 

The four essentials of soil management

Best farming practices vary greatly with each farm. Soil type, climate, farm history and personal style determine how a farmer will approach and develop their farm practices. One thing that is certain however, is that every farmer needs to consider profitability in the long run over production. The production driven model that many farmers use is flawed and obsolete. Production needs to be accompanied by an increase in soil quality as well as an increase in animal and human health. At Chaos Springs we believe that best farming practices must include managing the farm as a whole entity. This includes management of soil minerals, soil biology, plants and the dynamic of soil energy, which we have titled The Four Essentials of Soil Management.


Dairy Farming

Dairy farming is one of the most challenging types of farm production units. Animals are “asked” to perform at high levels, pastures are pushed to the limits of their capacity, and farmers work long hours to achieve the end result. Dairy farms are also in an excellent position to harness on-farm resources to drive a good biological system. High stocking rates along with captured manures and effluent are the great beginnings for compost piles and liquid fertiliser applications. In particular, the use of effluent with compost and small amounts of fine particle fertilisers can eventually be your entire fertility program. Contact us for more information on designing a complete program for your dairy operation.

 

Orchard management

Biological Management of orchards requires even greater attention to fungal biomass in the soil. Soil Food Web recommends a minimum total fungal biomass of 500 (μg/g). This is achieved by inoculation of your soils with many varieties of fungi through composting, compost teas and other fungal inoculums. In addition a correct feeding program with things like seaweed, humic and fulvic acids, compost teas and extracts, and other food resources is essential. Attention should also be paid to not killing your beneficial’s with the over use of herbicides, pesticides and especially fungicides. The over use of chemical fertilisers can also reduce your fungal biomass and function.

 

Vineyard management

Biological Management of orchards requires even greater attention to fungal biomass in the soil. Soil Food Web recommends a minimum total fungal biomass of 500 (μg/g). This is achieved by inoculation of your soils with many varieties of fungi through composting, compost teas and other fungal inoculums. In addition a correct feeding program with things like seaweed, humic and fulvic acids, compost teas and extracts, and other food resources is essential. Attention should also be paid to not killing your beneficial’s with the over use of herbicides, pesticides and especially fungicides. The over use of chemical fertilisers can also reduce your fungal biomass and function.

 

Cropping & market gardens

Cropping and market garden management usually requires a certain amount of disturbance to the soil. Every time you plough, rip or rototill your soil you introduce oxygen and increase the biological activity in the soil. This usually results in the loss of soil carbon. Soil carbon is the home and basic food resource of the biology.  When you continue to manipulate the soil without a system of returning the carbon you eventually end up with homeless biology.  This reduces soil function, especially the soil's ability to retain nutrients and suppress disease. This is easy to remedy through compost, compost teas and extracts, and good crop rotation.

 

Conventional Farm Management

Conventional Farm Management is commonly practiced throughout the industrialised world. It can rely on the use of chemical fertilisers, herbicides, pesticides, animal intensifications, large amounts of farm imported feeds and Genetically Modified Organisms to increase production. The Cyclone Soil System can be used to improve a conventional farming program by helping to build soil organic matter and improve the biological engine of the farm. In particular the Cyclone Multi-Task Sprayer can be used to mix and deliver farm nutrients in an economic and efficient manner. See our recipe section for more information on using the Cyclone System on conventional farms.

 

Organic Farming

Organic farming is a combination of ancient farm systems and modern inputs. Conventional or petroleum based products are not used nor are modern breeding techniques such as genetic modification. Organic farms can be certified as long as the farm follows a lengthy list of protocol and inspections to qualify the process the farm uses. Organic farming is the most well known of the sustainable soil management techniques, having a world-wide following and a multi billion dollar market. Certification gives the consumer an assurance that the produce has met specific criteria specified by the certifying body.

 

Biodynamic Farming

Biodynamic Farming shares most of the methods of organic farming but includes the management of the energetic realm of soils. The energetic realm of soils deals with the vibrations and frequencies that our entire world and universe operate on. Biodynamics was created with a series of lectures in 1924 by Rudolph Steiner. It is practiced worldwide and has its own certification, recognised in about 50 countries.